By Tabassum Mosleh

بسم الله الرحمن الرحيم

Allah ﷻ has given us the Quran as a guidance and mercy. He has not only told us what to do and not to do, but given us many examples, both good and bad, from the lives of both prophets and wrongdoers. He ﷻ has given certain groups of people— having unique characteristics— special names, and has described what these unique characteristics are. Here are four excellent examples:

1. Al-Nās

Allah ﷻ addresses by this term all kinds of people, in all stations of life, black or white, tall or short, believers or disbelievers. It is indeed the first address with which Allah calls anyone in the Quran:

O mankind (al-Nās), worship your Lord, who created you and those before you, that you may become righteous . . . [Quran, 2:21]

2. Al-Kāfirūn/ Alladhīna kafarū

Many of us often have confused ideas about who a kāfir is. It isn’t used in the Quran as a synonym for ‘non-Muslim’. Allah ﷻ says (translation):

Indeed, those who disbelieve (alladhīna kafarū)- it is all the same for them whether you warn them or do not warn them – they will not believe. (Quran, 2:6)

Why then, is the prophet ﷺ asked to call them to Islam, if they will never believe? That’s because amongst the non-Muslims, there are those who are prospective Muslims, in whose hearts there are seeds of faith that just need some water to grow, and those who will never be guided and deserve the title of ‘disbelievers’, but the point is that we really can’t differentiate which is which. Only Allah knows what’s inside the hearts.

3. Ulū al-Albāb

Allah ﷻ encourages us to use our intellect, and discourages blind following. Unlike other religions, Islam is not established on conjecture, it doesn’t need us to close our eyes and use our emotions as a guide. Rather we are again and again in the Quran told to use the qualities that make us intelligent creatures. Allah says, Indeed, in the creation of the heavens and the earth and the alternation of the night and the day are signs for those of understanding (Ulū al-Albāb). (3:190)

We are told to look at the innumerable signs which point towards the existence and attributes of our creator, to “give thought to the creation of the heavens and the earth “ (3:191), in order to reach the only conclusion possible:

Our Lord, You did not create this aimlessly; exalted are You [above such a thing]; then protect us from the punishment of the Fire. (3:191)

4. Al-Muttaqūn

Once we have used our intellectual faculties and come to the conclusion that Islam is the truth, the only true religion, and that the Quran is indeed Allah’s speech, then it’s absurd to question its injunctions, its good heralds and its warnings. Now it’s time to become al- Muttaqūn, those who:

  1. believe in the unseen
  2. establish prayer
  3. spend out of what Allah has provided for them
  4. believe in what has been revealed to Muhammad ﷺ
  5. and what was revealed before
  6. and of the Hereafter they are certain
  7. Those are upon [right] guidance from their Lord
  8. And it is those who are the successful. (Quran, 2:3-5)

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